The Center for Sustainable Biomanufacturing (CSB) at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy NY is comprised of a diverse, interdisciplinary team of researchers committed to solving some of the planet’s greatest challenges through rapid & sustainable advancement in Biomanufacturing. It’s goals are achieved through collaboration among other academic institutions, non-profit organizations, foundations & industrial suppliers.
Biopharmaceuticals are some of the most impactful drugs on the market today. However, the sustainability of biopharmaceutical manufacturing, in general, is poor. There are four key areas the CSB investigates to improve the sustainability of producing biopharmaceuticals: (1) lowering raw materials mass intensity for manufacture, (2) optimizing production/energy use efficiency (3) reducing waste generation from the manufacturing process, & (4) lowering global distribution costs.
Chemistry plays an essential role in helping society achieve sustainability goals & the CSB is in a position to make a difference. Our research is aimed at enabling new chemical research, education, and sustainable chemical manufacturing practices.
The US Northeast has historically been a manufacturing center for raw materials processing, textiles, and other intermediates. Today, through biomanufacturing, the region is poised to offer solutions to many of the problematic results of petrochemical dependency that subsequently led to pollutants in our landfills, water systems, and even food. Advances include microbial-derived surfactants for interfacial solutions, bioplastics coupled with biological catalysts to degrade plastics (bio-recycling), organic acids (e.g., adipic acid, succinic acid, amino acids), chemical building blocks, bio-grown materials (shaped articles, foams, wood substitutes, insulation), cellulose nanofibers from bacteria, biopesticide ingredients, and natural products and monomers for polymer synthesis. , all of which enables the manufacturing of bio-based offsets to advanced functional materials, chemicals, and additives.
Generating renewable energy and CO2 conversion are essentially one and the same. In the end, electrons are needed, and these electrons need to be transferred to CO2 efficiently. This area of research focuses primarily on how to reduce energy in biomanufacturing processes that would otherwise be unsustainable when scaled industrially.
Digital technologies play a transformative role in not only developing direct solutions for manufactured products, but also in how we manufacture in general these are: (1) AI/ML-based SMART manufacturing, (2) Life Cycle Analysis, and (3) Systems Engineering Design Approach to Biomanufacturing